Thursday, February 5, 2009

~Striped Butter mints~

In Middle School I went on a field trip to San Francisco to see A Christmas Carol play. After the play we all packed on the bus and headed home. One of my best friends and I sat in the back, you know, the spot in the back where you sit and look out the emergency exit. She opened her bag and pulled out some after dinner mints and offered me some. We sat there chewing and sucking on pink, yellow, green and white after dinner mints all the way home. It was the first time I really remembered eating these wonderful soft mints, and i loved it! I love it when you suck on them and they just dissolve in your mouth, or the way they stick in your teeth like you'd been chewing spoon fulls of cornstarch (not that I ever have, it's just what I'd imagine it'd be like) and it's all stuck in your teeth. When my mom worked at cost plus I always looked forward to Christmas time, she would bring home a few boxes of soft peppermint sticks, and/or the soft peppermint balls. I would eat them till my tongue hurt.

This month from my cook book club I ordered Brittles, Barks & Bonbons delicious recipes for quick and easy candy by Charity Ferreira. I was so excited to see there's a recipe for stripped butter mints. It seems easy enough once you have all the ingredients. I can't wait to try them!

~Striped Butter Mints~

4 1/4 to 4 1/2 Cups powdered sugar, plus more for dusting
1/4 Cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, at room temp.
1/4 Cup whipping cream
1/8 teaspoon peppermint oil*
Gel food coloring*

Makes about 1 pound of mints
Step 1: With a mixer on low speed, beat together the sugar, the butter, cream and peppermint oil until well blended. The mixture will be stiff, when it becomes too stiff for the mixer, turn it out onto a surface lightly sprinkled with powdered sugar and knead by hand, working in more powdered sugar as necessary, until the mixture is soft and smooth but not sticky.

Step 2: Divide the mixture into 8 pieces. Working with 1 piece at a time (cover the remaining pieces with plastic wrap while you work, to prevent them from drying out), add a few drops of red and green (or other) food coloring to different spots, and work the pieces gently in your hands until the color is distributed in irregular streaks (to tint the mints a solid color, just mix the food coloring completely in until no streaks remain). On a surface dusted with powdered sugar, roll each piece into a rope about 10 inches long and 1/4 inch thick. With a sharp knife, cut the rope into 1/4 inch squares. Place the mints on waxed paper-lined baking sheet.

Step 3: Cover the mints loosely with a second sheet of waxed paper and let them stand at room temp. until dry, about 8 hours. Rrefrigerate in an airtight container for up to 1 week.

* Gel food coloring and peppermint oil are available at stores that sell candy-making supplies. You can substitue regular food coloring and peppermint extract, but neither the flavor nor the color will be quite as intense.


Pragmacat said...

Have you had the ones with the green thing in the middle?

One of my favorite candies, ever!

Justine said...

i love butter mints!! i never knew you could make them at home; how exciting!